Gigabyte GA-8VT880 Ultra - IntroductionIntroductionDual Channel DDR memory for the Pentium 4, once only dream is now a full blown reality. The technology, first pioneered and introduced by nVidia as revolutionary desktop requirement has fully graduated and been beefed up since then.Now with 128bit interface and up to and beyond DDR-400 speeds, it's no wonder everyone wanted a piece of the action. With Dual DDR not benefiting AMD Athlon XP anywhere near as much as the Intel Pentium 4, it has taken VIA some time to adopt the Dual Channel standard, in fact, VIA has pushed single channel technology with its so-called Faststream64 technology.The PT880, which we tested earlier in our Dual Channel DDR chipset roundup for the Pentium 4, we saw VIA put in a great effort for its first Dual Channel chipset. Today we take a look at Gigabyte's adoption of this chipset, the 8VT880 Ultra.
Gigabyte GA-8VT880 Ultra - SpecificationsSpecifications of the 8VT880 UltraCPUSupports Intel Pentium 4 1.4GHz ~ 2GHz mPGA 478 CPU WillametteSupports Intel Pentium 4 2.0GHz ~ 2.8GHz mPGA 478 Northwood (400FSB)Supports Intel Pentium 4 2.2GHz ~ 3.06GHz mPGA 478 Northwood (533FSB)Supports Intel Pentium 4 2.4CGHz ~ 3.2CGhz mPGA 478 Northwood (800FSB)Supports Intel Pentium 4 2.8EGhz ~ 3.4Ghz mPGA 478 Prescott (800FSB)Supports Intel Celeron 1.7GHz ~ 2.9Ghz mPGA 478 (400FSB)ChipsetVIA PT880 With HTPT880 NorthbridgeVT8237 SouthbridgeVIA V-Link @ 533MB/sBus Frequency100/133/200MHz Internal400/533/800MHz ExternalNetburst Micro ArchitectureExpansion Slots1 AGP 4x5 PCIExpansion Ports1 PS2 Keyboard Port1 PS2 Mouse Port8 USB 2.0 Ports (4 rear accessible, 4 via expansion bracket)2 Firewire Ports (via expansion bracket)2 Serial Ports 1 Parallel Port3 Stereo Audio Ports 1 Game Port (via expansion bracket)Special FeaturesBIOS overclocking control of FSB, voltages.Onboard Realtek Gigabit NetworkingFirewireITE GigaRAID IDE RAID
Gigabyte GA-8VT880 Ultra - FeaturesFeatures of the 8VT880 Ultra- Package and Contents
Gigabyte GA-8VT880 Ultra - Features ContinuedFeatures of the 8VT880 Ultra Continued- Chipsets powering the show ContinuedFirewire, once only the dream of PC enthusiasts is now a full blown epidemic. Virtually every hardcore branded motherboard has either a VIA VT6306 or Texas Instruments Firewire controller chip onboard. The 8VT880 uses the popular VIA VT6306 chip providing a total of three Firewire ports which is more than enough for the 1394 standard.
Gigabyte GA-8VT880 Ultra - Benchmarks - Test System Setup and SiSoft Sandra 2004 SP1Test System SetupProcessor: Intel Pentium 4 3.2GHz (800MHz FSB) (Supplied by Spectrum Communications)Memory: 2x 256MB OCZ DDR-533 (Supplied by OCZ)Hard Disk: Western Digital 7200 RPM PATA (Supplied by Plus Corporation)Graphics Card: Gigabyte GeForce FX 5950 Ultra (Supplied by Gigabyte)Operating System: Microsoft Windows XP Professional SP1Drivers: nVidia nVidia Forceware 56.64SiSoft Sandra 2004 SP1SiSoft Sandra (the System ANalyser, Diagnostic and Reporting Assistant) 2004 SP1 is a synthetic windows benchmark that features different tests used to evaluate different PC subsystems.
Gigabyte GA-8VT880 Ultra - Benchmarks - PCMark04PCMark04PCMark04 is a new multipurpose benchmark, suited for benchmarking all kinds of PCs, from laptops to workstations, as well as across multiple Windows operating systems. This easy-to-use benchmark makes professional strength benchmarking software available even to novice users. PCMark04 consists of a series of tests that represent common tasks in home and office programs.
Gigabyte GA-8VT880 Ultra - Benchmarks - 3DMark033DMark033DMark03 is the latest instalment in the popular 3DMark series. By combining DirectX 9 support with completely new graphics (including the GeForce FX and ATI Radeon 9800), it continues to provide benchmark results that empower you to make informed hardware assessments.Please Note: Due to recent events with the 3DMark03 series, we are adding results purely for those who are still in favor of 3DMark03. These results should not be taken too seriously and are only added for interest sakes.
Gigabyte GA-8VT880 Ultra - Benchmarks - Aquamark3Aquamark3Aquamark3 is the latest instalment of the Aquamark benchmark suite. This new benchmark is much more powerful and demands much more from both the system and the graphics card. If there is any weakness in the system or 3D components, Aquamark3 will find them.
Gigabyte GA-8VT880 Ultra - Benchmarks - Halo PCHalo PC - Combat EvolvedHalo PC is new to us at TweakTown. Though we have used it in a couple of benchmarks in the past, it has now found a permanent place in our Benchmark Suite. This is simply due to its support for the latest DirectX 9 API's to put some more stress on the system to determine the best of the best.
Gigabyte GA-8VT880 Ultra - Benchmarks - Jedi Knight IIJedi Knight IIJedi Knight II, Jedi Outcast is an OpenGL game that many have been waiting for. It has much improved graphics over its predecessor. It fully supports advanced shaders, as well as very high texture resolutions and effects. There is one demo included in the multi-player section that is good for benchmarking use.
Gigabyte GA-8VT880 Ultra - Benchmarks - Unreal Tournament 2003Unreal Tournament 2003Unreal Tournament 2003 continues the success that Unreal Tournament generated as an online game and benchmark. UT2003 pulls all of its weight on to the 3D and Memory subsystems, pushing graphics reality to the maximum is its game, and you need some serious power to gain playable scores with this game.
Gigabyte GA-8VT880 Ultra - ConclusionConclusionGigabyte is definitely one for trying new things. For us it can be a way to get our hands on either one of the hard to find SiS chipsets or the new VIA PT880, but sometimes there is a cost - either not enough overclocking, lacking certain features or overall no BIOS updates to rectify problems since so much is being taken on.The GA-8VT880 Ultra is a motherboard that has some potential; however, just a few things set it back. Firstly the placement of the 4 pin power connector. We have given Gigabyte some head way when it comes to this problem, but it doesn't seem to be something that is coming to the attention of the R&D department. For low cost motherboards it is fine but for avid overclocking motherboards, times are changing and something needs to be done.Overclocking options while good could be improved. After all, EPoX, a company who once had no overclocking motherboards have pulled themselves to one of the top overclocking manufacturers, and with some careful work, Gigabyte could as well.On the good side, we have a reasonable overclocking set, Gigabit Ethernet, Firewire and PATA and SATA RAID which are both a great bonus especially for IDE RAID users who are still in existence.The Gigabyte GA-8VT880 Ultra has proven to be a motherboard worthy of a mid-class system, but for hardcore overclocking, look elsewhere.- ProsReasonable overclocking setRelatively good performanceGigabit EthernetIDE RAIDFirewire- ConsOverclocking could be improvedPlacement of 4 pin power connector needs rethinkingRating - 7.5 out of 10
Last updated: Apr 7, 2020 at 12:26 pm CDT
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